Watts Service Focus

How watertight is your health and safety policy?

When did you last review your health and safety policy? All employers with five or more employees are under a legal obligation to have a written health and safety policy.

The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 Section 2 (3) states that:

“It shall be the duty of every employer to prepare and as often as may be appropriate revise a written statement of his general policy with respect to the health and safety at work of his employees and the organisation and arrangements for the time being in force for carrying out that policy, and to bring the statement and any revision of it to the notice of all of his employees.”

With this in mind, employers must ensure their health and safety policy includes the following:

  • A statement of intent outlining the company’s objectives for health and safety;
  • Details of your organisation that clearly define company structure and the roles, relationships and responsibilities of individuals;
  • Details of arrangements made for planning, organising and controlling hazards; and
  • Details of the ways in which the effectiveness of these arrangements is to be monitored and measured.

Once in place, annual reviews of the health and safety policy should be scheduled. However, additional reviews should be undertaken if:

  • There are changes to existing health and safety legislation;
  • Changes are made either to the company’s structure or business activities which mean additional safety procedures for employees or residents are required; or
  • An accident occurs which reveals gaps in the existing policy.

For more information go to www.hse.gov.uk

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The Watts Bulletin is the technical companion to the Watts Pocket Handbook, the essential guide to property and construction, as used by professionals since 1983.

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